Memphis Fast Fiction Home
07.04.2011
austere
Alpha Newberry

She spat on the grave. And then the rain started, as it is wont to do when a spurred lover stands alone over her dead partner’s grave.

In her hands, a glossy photograph flaps in the wind.

“Dammit, Will.”

The photograph is of them. It is in blinding color, over-saturated, perfectly composed for that half second of life between shutter opening and closing.

They are standing at one of his openings. Before one of his photographs. Her arm is around him, but his is not around her.

No one ever knew they were together. He told her that he kept too many public lovers; she told him that it didn’t matter. But, regardless of what either of them said, it always did.

She puts the photograph back into her purse, and swings the camera draped around her shoulder into her hands. Holding a hand over the lens to mask it against the falling rain, she presses the shutter button.

“You were always a bastard. But you’ll always be my bastard.”

The shutter clicks. It’s a picture of his headstone. A perfect capture of the austere grey of the day.

She’s shooting black and white, in opposition to their color.

Memphis Note
William Eggleston was born and lived in Memphis, Tennessee. More than any other photographer, he is credited with bringing color photography into the norm of both art and commercial consumption. He currently lives in Memphis, in declining health, and complicated circumstances.

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